Home Digital Marketing If Event Marketing Is Now Digital Marketing, How Can Brands Nail Events In The Zoom Era?

If Event Marketing Is Now Digital Marketing, How Can Brands Nail Events In The Zoom Era?

If Event Marketing Is Now Digital Marketing, How Can Brands Nail Events In The Zoom Era?

Director, Enterprise Sales – RainFocus the event marketing platform that captures, analyzes & harnesses data for better events & conferences

Event marketing has changed substantially over the last two decades. It’s now a more important component of digital marketing than ever before and thoroughly embedded in the martech stack. Just look at the events of the previous two years: In a short time, the events industry pivoted from occasionally offering virtual and hybrid event options to providing those experiences as a mainstay.

Today, brands must provide opportunities that give customers the full event experience in digital form—while avoiding the potentially detrimental drawbacks of digital experiences such as Zoom fatigue. While they won’t be able to accomplish everything overnight, business leaders in the marketing space can prepare today. Key steps include removing silos from their teams, focusing on their user experience and—in some cases—taking inspiration from the latest social media platforms to inspire their next event.

Take a page from social media’s book: Creating snackable content can help drive engagement.

On TikTok, many videos are just 10 to 30 seconds long, include a brief description and usually incorporate storytelling elements such as music or audio to get a message across. Each user’s feed is constantly optimized to serve up content catering to their interests.

For B2B events with content serving as a critical step in the customer journey, it’s not realistic for a guest speaker to unravel the complexities of their expertise in mere seconds or to the tune of trending audio. But content that holds attendees’ attention can be critical for any successful event, be it in-person, hybrid or virtual. As event marketers, we can take note from social media platforms like TikTok and a reason for its success—short-form content, personalization and exceptional delivery.

As event marketers choose to spend on the frills of an in-person event or experiment with different online capabilities, they must also remember the core value proposition. B2B professionals attend events to learn and network. Even the flashiest event can fall flat if the content isn’t of the utmost quality. Rather, event marketers must meet attendees with stellar personalized content at the right time to create outstanding experiences that satisfy their desire to grow and learn as industry professionals.

We must end the event marketing silo and make better use of data.

For far too long, event marketers have dealt with event marketing tools separate from their marketing tech stack. This siloing has impacted how organizations can repurpose and collect customer data and use it elsewhere in events and other marketing channels. After all, event data is critical beyond the end of an event. It remains valuable year-round, enabling marketers to engage with customers and share relevant content and information tied to their previous experiences.

Event success requires the right marketing strategy. The more data you collect, the more it will strengthen your strategy by helping you understand potentially interested attendees, providing a targeted approach to teasing out the right content at just the right time.

Anyone can analyze event data, but to avoid falling behind, it’s crucial to integrate the data into the martech stack. By doing so, marketing leaders can gain a better understanding of each end user’s background and current needs, ultimately pairing information learned with behavioral data to make better recommendations before, during and after the event. By removing silos and using data better, leaders can also more carefully curate personalized experiences, avoiding event fatigue. As a disclosure, my own company RainFocus is a provider of such event marketing data solutions.

Forget the “in-person vs. virtual” debate and focus on user experience.

As people return to in-person events, some have begun questioning whether physical and virtual events can continue to coexist. Is an in-person event always better, or will attendees prefer the convenience of virtual? These questions are inherently flawed. Marketers must understand that it is not about the form in which the event takes place but about creating a memorable experience for the attendee by understanding what interests them and what they need. When the customer experience is your primary focus, it’s more likely that they will retain what they learn, leading to brand loyalty.

Marketers should also consider rebuilding their customer journey pipeline as a series of multiple event experiences and touchpoints, both physical and digital, creating a new channel comprised of sub-channels of event experiences. These sub-channels not only strengthen attendees’ relationships between events and the digital marketing channel but also integrate the customer through the sales and marketing funnel seamlessly.

As event marketers, we can now tie relevant digital content to unique customer journeys and deliver that content within unforgettable experiences to strengthen customer relationships and ensure long-term business impact.

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